It's strange (and wonderfully nice), being in a place with less grief. Well, suppose I mean to say, less potent grief. There is much about my life now that is good and happy and joyful.
And yet grief is still all around.
In the last few weeks, a former co-worker emailed to say her 10 month old nephew has leukemia, a lifelong friend underwent the surgeon's knife to undo a tumor in/around her spine, and a co-worker's 12 year old autistic son went in to have a routine tooth extraction and never woke up from the anesthesia.
I saw my coworker as he return to work this week and and spoke with him. He teaches both at the school I work at as well as Covenant. (He's a very, very kind man who once responded when introduced to Adam, "Oh, you're Hannah's husband! Good to meet you!" Since we live at the college where Adam works and graduated from, I'm usually introducing myself the other way around. He was so thoughtful about affirming my identity outside of "The Covenant Circle.")
He was gentle and gracious and the pain of losing his only son was there on his face, welling up in his eyes. We talked about the pain of grief - death, stroke, cancer, infertility.
We agreed that there is a place for healing - we get there sometimes on this side, but there's a wounding that will never heal this side of heaven. We long for Heaven.
He said that it's called The Argument from Desire.
We parted. He turned and thanked me for the note of scripture I had written in a card. I thought about that scripture. It was given to me as a gift, from a friend, left for me on a sticky note in my desk, shortly after my father's stroke. It has always stayed with me.
The Lord your God is in your midst,
a mighty one who will save;
he will rejoice over you with gladness;
he will quiet you by his love;
he will exult over you with singing.
And so I had given it to him - the one thing we can give to one another when words fail- the gift of the Holy Spirit speaking love and compassion through his Word.